Narcology (Russian: наркология: narkológija), from Russian нарко- (narco-, pertaining to narcotics, illicit drugs) + -логия (-logy, "branch of study") is a subspecialty of psychiatry dealing with the prevention, treatment, diagnosis, social care and recovery of drug-dependent persons.[1] The study and science of phenomena of "narcomania"[note 1], "toxicomania"[note 2], chronic alcoholism, and its ætiology, pathogenesis, and clinical aspects.[1][2] The term for a practitioner of narcology is narcologist. In the United States, the comparable terms are "addiction medicine" and "addictionist".

Occupation type
Activity sectors
Education required
Diploma of Pediatrician or
Diploma of Physician
+ Subspecialization in psychiatry-narcology (Intership/Residency)
Fields of
  • Narcological dispensaries
  • narcological cabinets
  • narcological clinics
Related jobs
Addiction psychologist

Narcology was introduced as a separated medical specialty in the Soviet Union during the early 1960s through the 1970s.[3] The term "narcology" is used especially in the countries of the former Soviet Union, including Russia.[2]

Human right violations in Russia

United Nations bodies and human rights organizations have documented human rights violations against people who use drugs in Russia, including the absolute prohibition on opioid substitution therapy and methadone maintenance treatment, the use of unscientific methods in the treatment of addictive disorders, the absence of drug dependence treatment for people with serious medical conditions.[4]

See also

Further literature

  • Stoimenov, Y. A.; Stoimenova, M. Y.; Koeva, P. Y. (2003). Психиатрический энциклопедический словарь [Psychiatric Encyclopaedic Dictionary] (in Russian). Киев: МАУП. p. 565. ISBN 966-608-306-X.
  • Elovich, Richard; Drucker, Ernest (2008). "On drug treatment and social control: Russian narcology's great leap backwards". Harm Reduction Journal. 5 (1): 23. doi:10.1186/1477-7517-5-23. ISSN 1477-7517. PMC 2474597.


  1. '"Narcomania"' (наркомания: narkománija: from "narcotic" + "μανία" [madness]) is a Russian narcological term for "drug addiction" or "drug abuse" (the term usually refers to illicit, forbidden by law drugs).
  2. '"Toxicomania'" (токсикомания: toksikománija: from "toxic" + "μανία" [madness]) is narcological term for "inhalant abuser", "volatile substances", "benzine", "glue", etc. (related to only non-forbidden drugs)
  1. Гофман А. Г. "Большая российская энциклопедия: Наркология" [Great Russian Encyclopedia: Narcology]. BIGENC (in Russian). Retrieved March 31, 2019.
  2. World Health Organization. "Lexicon of alcohol and drug terms published by the World Health Organization". Retrieved March 31, 2019.
  3. Шабанов П. Д. (2003). Наркология: Практическое руководство для врачей [Narcology: Clinical Practice Guidelines] (in Russian). Moscow: ГЭОТАР-МЕД. p. 5. ISBN 5-9231-0183-1.
  4. Golichenko, Mikhail; Chu, Sandra Ka Hon (2018). "Human rights in patient care: drug treatment and punishment in Russia". Public Health Reviews. 39 (1). doi:10.1186/s40985-018-0088-5. ISSN 2107-6952. PMC 5984458.
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